What is Evaluation (infographic)

by May 29, 20130 comments

When I started my master in Program and Policies Evaluation in October 2012, I challenged myself to try to do all my homework and assignments in some friendly visual new formats, instead of traditional paragraphs conforming texts.

One of my first assignments, was to define what Evaluation is and what makes it different from other better-known disciplines. We were asked to deliver a 10 pages brief essay as a maximum. Here’s what I sent to my coach (who said she loved it).

Months later, I still find myself explaining what this is all about, even my close ones!

I guess, just as John Gargani posted recently: “Evaluation is an invisible giant”.

It is true that  quoting Scriven’s idea Evaluation is a transdiscipline: used as a tool by other disciplines, but still it has its own core of theory and methodology. It is necessarily into politics, but it has to be independent and look for “objectivity”. It requires accuracy, and yet a good dose of creativity… (I love it!)

So, I hope this chart helps to understand where Evaluation stands and what it stands for, in just a few words… 🙂


By the way, at this point it is only fair to mention David McCandless‘ beautiful blog –Information is beautiful-, which is one of the first I discovered and whose work I find elegant and indeed beautiful. His Venn diagram on “What makes good information design?” clearly inspired me.

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